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Writing by the Lake

 Writing Seminars for Adults in the Community

Lake Forest College and Lake MichiganLearn essential techniques and experiment with new forms.

You’ll connect with other writers from the community, and our outstanding faculty will provide individual advice and mentorship for your work. Whether you are a novice or a pro, Writing by the Lake will let you get to the next level.

Taught by award-winning authors, each seminar consists of four two-hour sessions and ends with an individual evaluation and “Next Steps” conference. Your “Next Steps” conference will provide one-on-one time with your Writing by the Lake faculty member to discuss where to take your writing next.

2020 Classes

Writing Fiction Across the Genres

Tuesdays, 9:30-11:30 a.m., July 7, 14, 21, 28

Led by Susanna Calkins, prize-winning mystery writer, historian, and Director of the Searle Center for Advancing Learning and Teaching at Northwestern University

Susanna Calkins writes historical mysteries. Her first series, the Lucy Campion Mysteries set in 17th century London, was nominated for many writing prizes and won the Sue Feder Historical Mystery (Macavity) Award. Her second series, the Speakeasy Mysteries, is set in a Prohibition-Era Chicago speakeasy.  The second book in the Speakeasy Mysteries series will be published on July 28.

Calkins holds a PhD in history and taught history at Lake Forest College for a number of years.  She currently is the Director of the Searle Center for Advancing Learning and Teaching at Northwestern University. Born and raised in Philadelphia, she lives in the Chicago area with her husband and two sons and is the current president of the Sisters in Crime Chicagoland Chapter.

Register here.

How to Apply

It’s easy! Submit the Writing by the Lake application. You will be asked to tell us about your writing experience and goals, and to provide a brief writing sample (up to 500 words).


Tuition for a Writing by the Lake seminar is $300, which includes  four two-hour class sessions, an end-of term writing project evaluation report, and a “Next Steps” conference with your faculty mentor. 

Writing by the Lake takes place in the beautiful confines of the College’s Glen Rowan House